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Galibier's Equipe 2 Aero Bib Shorts offer excellent value for money when you consider the performance. Their close fit feels slightly compressive but never restrictive, and the pad is super-comfortable both for long rides and shorter, harder efforts.
Galibier has given the original Equipe Aero bib shorts a bit of an upgrade with a new one-piece bib section and a new pad.
Let's kick off with that pad, the ProDry SL. It uses a three-layer, dual-density memory foam in its construction, according to Galibier. I don't like pads that are too thick, and at first glance – or rather, prod – I wasn't too sure I was going to get on with this one.
The two thickest sections of padding are around 13mm in depth, so I was concerned it was going to be squidgy, removing feedback from the bike and, worst case scenario, cause hotspots or numbness.
It's impressively firm, though, maintaining its shape, and didn't detract from the overall ride. Most importantly, it was very comfortable. I found that it barely compressed under normal riding conditions yet still provided a bit of 'suspension' when it was needed.
This really helped on longer rides, whether on the road or gravel tracks, and I found that the more miles I did over the test period, the more the pad kind of moulded itself to the shape of my sit bones and became even more comfortable.
As for the rest of the shorts, well, they didn't let the pad down.
The multi-panel design of the main part of the shorts gives a great fit, cut in a way to suit your position on the bike.
The fabric is slightly compressive without being over the top, which gives a boost to muscle support, which again helps on those longer rides – although both the Lycra fabrics and the pad still work for those harder, shorter efforts.
The lightweight bib section has no seams at the shoulders which means comfort all round, with the wide straps reducing pressure and guaranteeing comfort.
When stretched, holes in the back panel open up, which helps breathability.
The only thing I didn't quite get on with at first was the leg gripper. I have quite large thighs and I felt that they were a little restrictive. Like the pad, though, they did relax a bit over time, providing a more comfortable fit. It's something worth bearing in mind the first time you try them on.
Sizing-wise they are true to Galibier's guide, and in line with what I'd consider to be standard for the UK market.
The overall quality of the Equipe 2 shorts is to the high standard I've grown to expect from Galibier. The stitching is neat throughout, and the flatlocked seams increase comfort.
Taking all of this into account, the £73 price tag is pretty impressive.
And last year I found the NVPA BIB/Short Navy supremely comfortable, but again they're considerably more expensive than the Galibiers at £145.
The Galibiers offer a great performance, with the highlight being that pad. It's really comfortable for short rides but even better for those longer treks, and when you consider the quality the price is very impressive indeed.
Well-made, high-performing bib shorts with an excellent pad at their heart
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Galibier Équipe 2 Aero Bib Shorts
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
Galibier says, "Our Équipe shorts have proved to be fantastic for both comfort and durability since their launch in 2018. For the new evolution of the bib shorts; we have retained the finest Italian lycra and introduced a one piece brace / bib and new pro Dry chamois to maximise the comfort on the body.
Construction stays with Carvico's Aero fabric on the ergonomic side panels, designed specifically to reduce drag. This Lycra is also four way stretch to mirror the pedalling motion and eliminate the stress point at the hip. Our partner factory worked with us to locate ideal material placement to optimise comfort, stitching the front and back panels in very light compression for second-skin feel.
Our ProDry SL is a high performance chamois, ideal for long hours in the saddle. When you ride all day the chamois function is to reduce friction, remove moisture and protect from vibration. This pad is constructed 3-layer, dual-density memory foam construction breathability. Perfect fit for all shapes because it adheres better to the body allowing freedom of movement. The highest density support is located in the ischium (sit bones) area and greatly reduces friction and vibration when the pad is under stress. The entire pad is anti-bacterially treated during final assembly and is super soft.
The leg grippers are soft and secure silicone that subtly match our Team jersey range and your pedalling motion. 100% flat stitched to avoid irritation.
Your bike time just got better."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Galibier lists these details:
High performance dual Carvico fabric offers excellent fast wicking muscle support (UPF 50+).
Fully flat-locked seams
Multi-panel, anatomic construction (with seamless inside leg) for strength and comfort.
Soft 5cm Silicone gripper hems
Dual Mesh bibs for secure and comfortable fit.
Antibacterial coated chamois
Medium compression for longer rides
Super light wide top mesh design
Trim : Polyester 82%, Elastane 18%
Sizing is spot on.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Plenty of washes and no problems.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very comfortable pair of bib shorts regardless of the ride distance.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Leg grippers are a big snug to start with.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
At least half the price of many of the best performing bib shorts we've tested, as shown in the main review.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
The only small issue I had were the snug leg grippers, but they eased over time. Other than that, I can only praise every other aspect of the Equipe 2s.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!